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AFT’s Statement on Support of Farmers in New York State of the State Address

By Olivia Fuller

American Farmland Trust applauds Governor Hochul’s commitment in the 2022 state of the state to supporting the breadth of farmers in our state and strengthening the resiliency of our regional food supply chain, which must address the racial and economic inequities facing New York farmers. AFT is encouraged by efforts to minimize barriers of entry to institutional procurement through existing beneficial state programs, including Farm to School and NYS Grown & Certified, in particular for BIPOC farmers, and helping more farmers across the state adopt conservation practices. AFT also applauds the Governor’s reinforced commitment to increasing the Environmental Bond Act by $1 billion, and hopes to see a strong commitment made within it to permanently protecting farmland and supporting soil health.

If enacted, these actions and investments will help farmers access more local market opportunities, increase diversity and equity in farming, build on-farm resilience to the impacts of extreme weather while supporting farmers in playing a key role to mitigate climate change, and offer a pathway to protect more of New York’s valuable farmland resources. Access to land, farm viability, and key infrastructure are critical to strengthening our resilient food supply chain.

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